I woke up, and as per usual, I turned my computer on and began browsing facebook.
When I scrolled down and saw this version of Imagine by Pentatonix:
I realized I had never really listened to the words and thought about them, but this morning I listen…and I grew more and more sadden as the verses spilled out.
Imagine there’s no religion — for the sake of having peace and unity?
“False religion”, I growled under my breath, as I closed my laptop to get ready to head to work. While I fully intended on leaving these thoughts safely closed away with my laptop while I headed off to work, they followed me there.
Recently, I had a discussion with an individual about how christians never follow christian ideologies of love, charity, and the example of Christ. That there are so few actual christians that the name Christian is spoiled and that those who are truly Christ-like should find a new name to call themselves and do all they can to disassociate from the vast masses of those who call themselves Christians. Others have echoed this, saying they have never been more judged or hurt than by so-called Christians.
I apologized. I can’t undo what others have done or said, or failed to do or say. I said can offer them the chance to interact with a Christian (myself) whom I hope that they will find different than those who have caused them pain. I always offer the disclaimer– I am likely to hurt them too. I’m human afterall, but I am (and pray to remain) different than those who use religion as a means of control, of one-upping, and nothing short that bullying.
I felt that familiar crumbling-sinking within my chest– oh how many hurt people are there?
Taking a deep breath, now behind my work computer I catch a whiff of something my brain reads as artificial grape flavor. A memory flashes in my mind.
Grape bubble yum. The taste. The smell. The mouth too-full, tired. The memory came back to me, and danced in the spaces around my aching heart and searching mind that was carrying with weight the thoughts of false religion.
Fake grape. Fake religion.
Both may taste sweet to the partaker. Both come in a form as food, but offer no sustenance.
Don’t get me wrong. Bubble yum was delicious, as I remember it. It was soft and easy to chew……just….like…force fed false religion.
False religion often comes with a set of directions, easy enough to follow and understand. Don’t do this, or this, or this. Those who do this, or this, or that are sinners. They are bad. Save yourself by not being like them! It seems to promise, that by completing these directions you can earn your sustenance. Your salvation.
(no, most don’t cognitively recognize this — they will say they believe that only Christ saves through grace — but that’s not how they live, behave, or speak).
Still pondering the thoughts, one more begs for entertainment — “feed a starving man bubble yum, and he will still be a starving man.”
Christians, will you feed the starving man?
…if they are muslim?
…if they are LGBTQ?
….if they are black?
…if they are an addict?
…if they are a prostitute?
…if they are a felon?
…if they are a murder?
….if they are in some way different than you?
Will you love them? Do you believe and live by a love big enough to love them? Jesus went to eat with and talk with those that were different. His example to us is one of non-judgemental love. The love is what changed-and changes- people, not judgement and shunning.
So, if you have a mouth full of bubble yum (false religion), spit it out so you can speak love into the lives of these people. It isn’t feeding you anyway. You are the starving man, also.
(if that is too hard to read visit: http://www.teenvogue.com/story/muslim-lawyer-shuts-down-troll-christian-isis ).
Don’t be bubble yum.
…I have a feeling this is “part one” as I’d like to dive into what love means in different situations.
PS: Found this on the topic of being a scientific minded individual and believing in God– thought I’d share it with you: